I have been trying to come up with things to keep dad occupied at home. The last thing I want is him sleeping in front of a TV show he is not watching all day long. Not that might not happen from time to time. Now mind you, it has only been a week here, but these are things I have also done in the past with him when he visited or I visited him. This week I will seeking out senior resources and activities he can attend and hopefully a day program. So far I have had success with:

* Listening to music from his era. Pandora Rat Pack & big bands makes him sing and tap along (he was a musician).
* coloring children’s Mandalas and coloring books. Fat crayons, fat markers, some skinny markers
* coloring velvet art
* animal books
* art books
* looking at the newspaper and circulars
* Duplo blocks (large legos)
* getting the mail
* only watching select TV shows – Animal Planet, Judge Judy (his favorite), sports
* hanging out with our dog Chulo or one of our cats
* daily walks in the wheelchair with the dog
* watching the kids play

I would love any additional suggestions from you! I want to keep him busy all day so he sleeps well at night. Of course , being in a busy house is exhausting!

6 Replies to “Alzheimer’s: Keeping Busy and Stimulated”

  1. Greta,
    Do you have access to any really old photos he could look at. If he can remember at all, telling those “old time stories” often creates stimulation. (Maybe some pictures of areas he used to live in, work in, visit, etc.) We often drive Tim through areas he used to live in as a child. We also use military medals or little items that might have meant something special to him. We put them in his hands, and try to let him tell the story. If he has difficulty, we give clues. We also use a program on the computer called Lumosity (it’s online). I’m not sure if this is something your Dad could handle, but it could be worth a try. It is geared towards each person’s individual needs. It’s like having a therapist at home. If you tried it, it would pick up on your weak areas and work with you on them. See if its anything that might help (lumosity.com).

  2. Greta-
    I found this brochure from the Alzheimer’s Assn: http://www.alz.org/national/documents/brochure_activities.pdf

    Tina’s suggestion is in there. And I think the question of “can you help me?” is one your Dad may enjoy hearing..even if that help is just snapping green beans for dinner.

    I was thinking puzzles or tasks that involve sorting (maybe that’s my OCD) or counting out change from the change jar.


  3. Greta, thanks for the list and suggestions! I look forward to reading more!!! I am a caregiver for my mother-in-law. Jennifer, my FRSA recommended your blog. I am learning more and more daily about this disease and want to assist my husband as much as I can to make his mother as comfortable as possible.

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